smart display dates

Announced at I/O 2019 in May, the Google Nest Hub Max is available today from the Google Store and other retailers. The Made by Google Smart Display is simultaneously launching in the United States, United Kingdom, and Australia.

The Nest Hub Max is Made by Google’s second Assistant Smart Display and the first to launch — rather than be rebranded — under the unified Google Nest smart home brand. It shares a near identical design to the Nest Hub, but is larger with a 10-inch screen (versus 7-inch screen).

This makes the device ideal for watching YouTube videos and television, though it’s only a 1280 x 800 touchscreen. Ambient EQ still works to match the display to the room’s lighting environment and results in another great photo frame.

A 6.5-megapixel camera on the top bezel is the next major addition of the Nest Hub Max, and it powers a slew of features. A 127-degree-wide FOV is ideal for Google Duo video calls, while auto-framing keeps you in view.

Similar to Voice Match, Face Match identifies you and loads proactive notifications like upcoming events, reminders, commute times, and video messages from Duo. Face models are encrypted and stored on the Nest Hub Max, with the camera able to recognize when you’re walking by the Smart Display. A pill noting your picture and name appears in the top-right corner after you’re confirmed.

This camera also allows for Quick Gestures where users are able to gaze at the Nest Hub Max and raise their hand to play/pause media. Lastly, it’s a Nest Cam with livestreams and motion/sound alerts relayed to your phone. From the Google Home companion app, you can see a Live View, as well as use Talk and Listen, but other advanced functionality require the Nest app.

To ensure privacy, a light on the top bezel and UI prompt will always note when the camera is active, while the microphone mute switch also disables the lens. There is also a software toggle when you slide up from anywhere on the screen to disable the camera.

Meanwhile, the “Max” in Nest Hub Max is also a nod to the Google Home Max. A 3-inch 30W woofer on the back and two .7-inch 10W tweeters just under the display make up the stereo speaker system. Google also touts “ultrasound sensing” to pop-up media controls and the usual far-field microphones for hotword recognition.

Rounding out the specs is 802.15.4 (at 2.4G Hz) Thread support to extend your Nest smart home, 802.11ac, and Bluetooth 5.0. The Nest Hub Max is available in Chalk or Charcoal for $229 (in the United States), £219 (United Kingdom), and AUS$349 (Australia). Orders begin shipping today from the Google Store, while it’s also available at Best Buy and B&H Photo.

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Abner Li

Editor-in-chief. Interested in the minutiae of Google and Alphabet. Tips/talk: